Frequently Asked Questions

Is the Sommer Survey a personality test?

No. We assess motivation and decision-making strategies that drive job performance.

For example, the volatile personality profile of Steve Jobs was well known. His design-focused decision making profile was less well known to the public. Which was more important? Apparently, Apple found both vitally important. Those in an assessment role need to know how to assess personality and how to assess decision-making. Like fraternal twins, both are important.

To assess either personality or decision making, professionals will ask very different questions.

  • Personality features such as introverts or extroverts, don’t change once identified.
  • Decision priorities such as planning or operations must adapt as situations change.

The assessment of personality versus decision making requires two different kinds of tools to get the appropriate answers.

Does the Sommer Survey comply with EEOC regulations?

Yes. The Sommer Survey complies with all regulations.

What distinguishes the Sommer Survey from other assessment tools?

The Sommer Survey objectively describes the motives and decisions a person will apply to any specific job to solve day to day job challenges.

Analogous to a structured interview, the Survey elicits a person’s detailed strategy for doing a specific job.

  • A person selects and prioritizes tasks on the job according to their sense of the organization’s requirements.
  • A job strategy is the person’s self-described game plan for producing results on a specific job.
  • For example, one person might uniquely emphasize leadership; another might emphasize communications, or emphasize teamwork.

Any strategy has dozens of components – all of which appear in our reports. When profile data are shared by all interested parties, mutual understanding and effectiveness is enhanced.

For which purposes can the Sommer Survey be used?
  • Attracting more suitable candidates
  • Recruiting and screening for employment
  • Team management, team development or team building
  •  Job performance improvement
  • Organizational culture assessment and culture change
  • Succession Planning
  • Understanding and managing behavior
  • Conflict Management
  • Coaching and Development
  • Performance appraisals
  • Mergers & Acquisitions
  • Change Management
How does the Sommer Survey help management decision makers?

The Sommer Survey:

  • Provides reports that are easy to use and understand
  • Identifies a person’s job-specific game plan for on-the-job success
  • Describes what a person “will do”, “won’t do” and “can’t do” on the job
  • Provides supervisors with practical ways for understanding behavior
  • Provides common sense insights for recruiting, coaching, team building and development
  • Reports adaptability to changing situations e.g., bosses, peers, tasks, training and M&A
  • Meshes individual and organizational priorities for optimum shared ecology
What is the type of information I get from the Sommer Survey?

Here is a small sample of your gains from knowing the decision strategies and preferences profiled by the Sommer Survey.

You will know your candidate’s motives and decisions about:

  • Strategy and tactics
  • Leadership and communications
  • People, money, time and information
  • Policy and programs
  • Vision and communications
  • Priorities in the job’s game plan
  • Influencing and persuading others
  • Creating new and better options
  • Goal clarity and priorities
  • Communicating purpose and vision
  • Staying with the task under stress

  • Delegating task assignments
  • Risk tolerance or risk aversion
  • Cooperation and competition
  • Depth and breadth of scope
  • Shared and individual responsibility
  • Being a team player or team leader
  • Tolerance for diversity
  • Willingness to follow direction
  • Readiness to accept feedback
  • Willingness to create change
  • Commitment and engagement

You get many more actual measures of motivated decision-making in this high-tech package, unlike popular assessment tests that cannot access decision-making and motivational drivers.

What type of Sommer Survey reports are available?

Individual Decision Strategy Report

  • 3-page comprehensive self-explanatory report
  • Reveals a person’s complete decision strategy for pursuing success in their job
  • Report sections:
    • Overall strategy on the job
    • Situational and organizational awareness
    • Dealing with people & information
    • Dealing with change & rules
    • Optimal work environment
    • Tips for communicating with the candidate/employee
  • Optional: 4th page for certified users highlighting in-depth patterns
  • Download a sample report

Benchmark reports

Creating a benchmark is very straightforward and takes about 5 minutes. It allows you to assess how a candidate / employee matches the expected behavior & priorities on the job.

Creating a benchmark ads judgment to the system. Information is only relevant when it provides answers to what you’re looking for.

An automated invitation can be sent to others (e.g. the hiring manager, a potential supervisor or your client) to request their input or feedback.

  • A “performance benchmark” can be created (upon request) through a high-level statistical contrast analysis between top performers and under performers.
  • A “culture benchmark” can be created (upon request) through a high-level statistical analysis of the team/organizational culture. This benchmark indicates organizational culture fit.

Benchmark ranking: comparing a group of people to a benchmark

  • Indicating a XX % match to the benchmark per candidate
  • People are sorted according to their match to the benchmark
  • Ideally suited to assess top candidates from a large group of candidates, or to identify who definitely not to hire
  • One-click access to an individual’s Benchmark Comparison Report

Benchmark Comparison Report: comparing an individual to a benchmark

  • Overall benchmark match score: XX %
  • Comparison of the person’s scores and priorities to those of the benchmark
  • Indicating mismatches & potential derailers
  • One-click access to someone’s Individual Decision Strategy Report

Reverse Benchmark Comparison Report: comparing an individual to multiple benchmarks

  • Indicating a XX % match to each of the selected custom or template benchmarks
  • Ideally suited for career coaching, to compare hard to find candidates to all available positions or to verify in which team the candidate will best fit
  • One-click access to an individual’s Benchmark Comparison Report that indicates matches and mismatches

Team reports

Our team reports provide easy to use and relevant information about your teams.

Team Priorities Report

  • Common high and low priority decision strategy ingredients
  • Most and least similar decision strategy ingredients
  • Tips for communicating with the team and each team member

Team versus Person Report (e.g. the manager or a new hire)

  • The team compared to the highlighted individual’s highest and lowest priorities
  • Strongest differences between the individual and the team
  • In depth insights in the complete decision strategy of the team
  • Tips for communicating with the team and each team member

I found a lot of value in the reports. Especially for team management and fitting things together. The report helped us understand how our people work together and what makes them successful at their work. This helps us gain efficiencies and have a larger margin of profits.

– Team leader of account managers in the insurance industry.

Excel export of raw data

  • Available for certified users

Additional reports upon request

  • Raw data reports (only for certified users)
  • Tailored automatic feedback report for candidates (optional: in comparison to benchmark)
  • Custom reports that fit your needs and/or situation
Do I need to pass a certification program before I can use the Sommer Survey?

No. We have designed the interface and the reports to be intuitive and self-explanatory. In most situations, a brief introduction to the system and the type of information we provide is sufficient.

We do provide certification trainings upon request for organizations, HR professionals or consultants who want to access and process the raw data.